By Madeleine van Niekerk

Domestic maize prices picked up for the first time in four days on bargain hunting and higher Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) prices.

This follows a drop in domestic prices by a huge margin last week due to a larger than projected US stockpile report.

“US corn prices fell last week and we were playing catch-up with them for most of the week. Today we ended the session firmer due to stronger Chicago Board of Trade figures‚” a local trader said.

“The rand firmed over the weekend and on Monday and maize prices would have ended even firmer had the currency not strengthened so much‚” she said.

“Wheat ended a tad firmer due to firmer Chicago Board of Trade figures which were up on recent cold weather experienced in the US‚” the trader said.

The market now awaits the local wheat planting season at the beginning of May.

On Monday‚ local white maize for delivery in July 2013 closed the session R15.80 higher at R2‚100.80 per ton. September 2013 white maize gained R19 to R2‚128 per ton and December 2013 white maize added R20 to R2‚185 per ton.

The yellow maize July 2013 contract edged up R7 to R2‚075 per ton.

Wheat for July 2013 deliver was up R7 to R3‚427 per ton‚ while the September and December wheat contracts were untraded.